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Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Old Pine Box (Rupert the Bear)

Today's project gave me such joy whilst doing it and I wanted to share with you the simplicity of lining an old pine box with children's books. It took less than an hour and it was fun to see the old box come to life.

If you have a large wooden box which you use to store toys, add some colour and interest to the inside and decorate the lid. It will encourage children to use it.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

I chose Rupert as the books are printed in full-colour. If you prefer monochrome with a touch of orange or the red and black tint, look for annuals such as The Beano or The Dandy.

For this project, you will need:

Old pine box or similar toy box
Children's books with paper pages
Non-toxic PVA glue
and a child who will love using it!

Other full-colour options for a girl's room are Bunty or a large book of fairy tales.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

I found the Rupert books at a large second-hand market and you too will be able to find one or two books for a few pounds. 

These Rupert annuals are tatty and I used that to get the price down. The spines are all split and some of the pages are torn. However, I only needed 8 good, clean pages for the lining project so their overall condition was acceptable. 

It is lovely to know that these books have been thoroughly loved by small children so I don't feel so bad unpicking the binding and recycling them.

Lella Loves... Old Pine Boxes

Here is the pine box before I started. I didn't line the actual box as toy cars and Lego bricks would soon tear off the paper. If the box ends up storing blankets and books then I might well reconsider.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

The first thing to do is to separate the pages. Snip the string which holds the pages to the cover and remove. Do not simply tear the pages out as the margins will tear in an uneven, ragged manner.

Lella Loves... Old Pine Boxes

The lid of the box should be clean and dust-free. Wipe a damp, non-lint cloth all over and inside the box to remove any dust and cobwebs before you start the project.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

Take the glue and turn it upside down. Let the glue run out. If you squeeze the glue you will get huge blobs just like I did in the above photo - top left and bottom right - so let the glue flow whilst moving the bottle all over the surface.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

Lay the first pages on to the glue and work along. Depending on the size of your box, you will need to trim your pages so the images are the right size for the space.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

When you stick the top section, you will need to apply the glue to the pages and not to the box.

Lella Loves... Rupert the Bear

The finished look for less than £1. The photo was taken whilst the glue was still wet so the lifting ripples are simply where the pages are damp from the glue. As they dry, they will flatten out.

By taking an old Rupert the Bear annual and pasting some of the images to the inside of the lid, I have created a toy box which my nephew will want to use.

If you wanted to follow this blog-make but you don't have time to travel to a flea market, search eBay for instant gratification. There are plenty of Rupert annuals listed.

Your local charity shop's children's book section might well have something to inspire you. Bob the Builder and Maisy are firm favourites at the moment and those books are easily found.

I hope you enjoyed today's post.

Have a lovely day and pop back soon.

Lella  xx

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